How we use Cookies

MG sales soar with launch of new supermini

Small car has helped to spur the Birmingham car-maker to record sales growth

The MG3 supermini

MG'S launch of its MG3 supermini has helped spur the Birmingham car-maker on to a record sixfold sales growth in the first quarter of this year.

UK sales figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed a sales surge of 574 per cent for the Longbridge-based firm and confirmed it as the fastest growing manufacturer in the UK - in both March and the first quarter.

MG pointed to a number of factors behind its performance, including the arrival of the MG3, the introduction of a diesel engine in the MG6, a rapidly expanding dealer network and attractive finance offers.

The good news comes as the firm celebrates its 90th anniversary in 2014. The latest SMMT figures show in March MG's registrations were 361, compared to just 41 for the same month in 2013.

This represented a 780 per cent increase and was the highest UK sales increase in the automotive industry. Figures for the first quarter were not quite so high but still presented a rosy picture for a firm rising from the ashes after its acquisition by Chinese car giant SAIC.

Between January and March, MG sold 546 cars, compared to 81 for the same period in 2013 - an increase of 574 per cent compared to the first quarter of 2013. This was also an industry best.

Overall, the figures mean MG has already sold more cars in the UK this year than it did in the whole of 2013.

Across the industry UK car sales increased by an average of 13.7 per cent during the first quarter, meaning MG's rise in percentage terms was more than 40 times the industry average.

The closest firm to MG - and another that saw rapidly rising sales - was Renault's Romanian-made budget brand Dacia. It saw a first quarter increase of 244 per cent.

Familiar Midland marques had mixed fortunes and, somewhat surprisingly given its repeated sales rises, Land Rover's UK sales dropped by almost nine per cent.

Aston Martin saw sales dip slightly by just under one per cent while Jaguar saw a healthy sales rise of just under ten per cent.

MG's MG3 has been well received by the automotive press as the firm attempts to tap into high demand for stylish small cars. The car-maker claims it offers more than one million personalisation options, with buyers able to design their own car via an online configurator.

As far as its dealer network goes, MG is also on a major expansion drive. Ten new dealers have joined the ranks already in 2014, with more set to come on board as the year progresses.

Speaking about its success so far in 2014, MG spokesman Doug Wallace said: "The success for MG has been driven by the new MG3 and the upgraded MG6 diesel models with lower C02 figures. We are also seeing an increase in the size of our dealer network.

"So far this year, we have announced the appointment of a further 10 dealers, bringing the running total to 43. In addition, there are 12 aftersales only dealers.

"We will be announcing further dealer and aftersales appointments in the next few weeks and we are now getting an increasing number of prospective dealers contact us to talk about taking on an MG dealer franchise. We aim to grow the dealer network to around 80 by the end of this year and to grow again further next year."

As to its continued growth, he acknowledged it still had some way to go but added: "The sales figures in volume terms are still modest, however the trend is undeniably good.

"The value-for-money message of both the MG3 and MG6 models is really getting home now and people have more confidence in the new MG as our sales increase and the dealer network rapidly expands."

 

Journalists

Graeme Brown
Regional Head of Business
Enda Mullen
Business Reporter
Cillian O’ Brien
Business Reporter
Jon Griffin
Business Reporter
Alison Jones
Features writer
Ben Hurst
News Editor
Jonathan Walker
Political Editor